Large dialysis chains charge Medicare Advantage plans 27% more for services compared with what they charge the traditional, fee-for-service Medicare program, according to a new USC analysis. The study, led by USC Schaeffer Center and the Keck School of Medicine of USC, determined that a major reason is that two large providers dominate the dialysis market. This gives them leverage to negotiate Medicare Advantage payments that are significantly higher than what traditional Medicare pays.

This could increase patients’ out-of-pocket spending and impact the financial viability of these plans. The researchers recommend urging policy makers to address market consolidation among dialysis providers.

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